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Comprehensive coverage of the food industry's latest, breaking news brought to you by just-food's leading network of international journalists.

UK organic industry's bullish outlook

After some rocky years, the UK organic sector has reason to be cheerful again, with sales rising in 2014 against the backdrop of a declining...

Sustainability Watch: The US packaging challenge

The degree to which structural factors are inhibiting food companies from making faster progress on using recycled material in packaging and...

Maspex: M&A opportunities in eastern Europe

Poland-based food and drink group Maspex has grown to become one of the sector's largest companies in central and eastern Europe. A move in...

On the money: Can Danone grow fresh dairy?

Danone's fresh dairy sales struggled throughout 2014. Nevertheless, as the world's largest dairy manufacturer, the company believes it can l...

CAGNY: Hain CEO Simon sanguine about competition 19 Feb 2015

Dean Best

Hain Celestial can deal with any increase in competition in the US natural and organic sector from the country's mainstream consumer packaged goods companies. That was the typically bullish message from Irwin Simon, Hain's founder and CEO, as he addressed the Consumer Analyst Group of New York investment conference this week.

10 Things to Learn: Nestle's full-year results and the prospects for 2015 19 Feb 2015

Katy Askew

Nestle reported full-year results that were broadly in-line with expectations, along with a slight beat on margin, this morning (19 February). While the company is struggling to hit its medium-term organic growth target of 5-6%, the "Nestle Model", it is nevertheless driving efficiency gains while investing in its advantaged brands and categories. Here are some key points from Nestle's full-year results.

What the analysts say: Nestle's solid finish to 2014 19 Feb 2015

Katy Askew

Nestle revealed today (19 February) that full-year earnings rose on one-time gains and improved margins. Net sales were down due to the impact of currency exchange but the company booked organic sales growth of 4.5%. The sales performance met consensus expectations but came in below the "Nestle Model" that targets organic growth of 5-6% in the medium term. Shares in the Swiss food giant remained relatively flat this morning, reflecting the market's lukewarm response to Nestle's outlook - with sales expected to grow by "around 5%" in 2015 - and concerns over currency exchange.

CAGNY: Mondelez emphasises growth plans 18 Feb 2015

Katy Askew

Mondelez International has pursued an aggressive cost-cutting agenda that has seen it maintain profits in the face of growth-limiting macroeconomic headwinds. Even as the company said it expects margin expansion to be the primary profit driver in 2015, it would appear that Mondelez is shifting its focus to long-term growth initiatives. Katy Askew reports.

CAGNY: General Mills craving better-for-you growth 18 Feb 2015

Hannah Abdulla

Right-sizing and a continued acceleration to position itself as a "better-for-you" food maker are likely to feature heavily on General Mills' agenda in the near term, an audience at this year's Consumer Analyst Group of New York investment conference was told.

On the money: No quick wins for Kellogg 13 Feb 2015

Hannah Abdulla

Kellogg appeared to be getting real yesterday and slashed long-term sales targets, following yet another set of disappointing numbers that suggested the road to recovery for its core cereal category could be a long one.

10 Things To Learn: Mondelez's 2014 results and 2015 outlook 12 Feb 2015

Dean Best

Mondelez International's shares rose on the back of a fourth-quarter earnings beat but the company's performance, particularly on its top line, was mixed in 2014. We list the key points from the Cadbury maker's results and its guidance for 2015.

Focus: UK review into online ads shows more research needed 12 Feb 2015

Ben Cooper

The publication of the UK's Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) literature review on the impact of online food and drink advertising on children yielded few surprises and leaves many important questions unanswered.

On the money: PepsiCo managing its way through "volatile market" 11 Feb 2015

Katy Askew

With its exposure to volatile currencies and growing instability in developing countries, PepsiCo saw macro-economic issues weigh on its top-line performance in 2014. Conditions are expected to remain challenging in 2015 but the group remains confident it can continue to manage its way through such headwinds in the year to come. Katy Askew reports.

On the money: Hain Celestial: We feel more upbeat than ever 4 Feb 2015

Dean Best

Hain Celestial CEO Irwin Simon said today (3 February) the US group had never been so optimistic about its prospects, insisting the company's portfolio can benefit from consumer interest in what they eat.

just-food's pick: Top ten on-trend products at ISM 3 Feb 2015

Katy Askew

The mature confectionery and snack markets of Europe are not fast-growth environments in which to operate. In this context, innovation has become ever more key to the success of companies operating within the category. This innovative spirit was in full evidence at this year's 45th International Sweets and Biscuits Fair (ISM) in Cologne this week.

Shopper trends: The growth opportunities for stagnating private label 2 Feb 2015

Tim Eales, IRI

Private label is now a mature market - one that has grown quickly over recent years to a position of some strength in the European FMCG industry. A force to be reckoned with, traditionally private label has helped consumers reduce their weekly shopping bills and provide retailers with an extra opportunity to boost sales and grow margin.

On the money: Lacklustre sales see Hershey turn to snacking 30 Jan 2015

Hannah Abdulla

"Snacking... and portable snacking is not just short term, this is really a trend and it's becoming a habit," Hershey CEO John Bilbrey said yesterday as the US company announced its full-year results and its move to buy meat jerky brand Krave.

Focus: Food marketing to children on UK political agenda 29 Jan 2015

Ben Cooper

The inclusion in the UK Labour Party's new public health policy paper of a 'watershed' time restriction on the advertising of foods high in fat, salt or sugar (HFSS) as a future policy option has put the issue of food marketing to children firmly on the political agenda in the run-up to the country's General Election in May.

In the spotlight: Why Post is increasing its exposure to cereal 27 Jan 2015

Katy Askew

Since it span off from Ralcorp Holdings three years ago, Post Holdings has followed an aggressive M&A strategy. Deal-making has focused on diversifying its portfolio to gain access to on-trend categories. Given this drive, perhaps yesterday's (26 January) announcement of Post's acquisition of MOM Brands - a move that will deepen its exposure to the struggling US cereal category - could seem a curious tactic. Katy Askew investigates.

On the money: Premier CEO expects to benefit from rebound at UK supermarkets 23 Jan 2015

Katy Askew

Premier Foods CEO Gavin Darby has predicted the UK food group's brands will be the co-beneficiaries of a rebound at the country's largest supermarkets.

On the money: Unilever: We need to respond faster to consumer trends 20 Jan 2015

Katy Askew

Unilever must respond faster to emerging consumer trends if it is to grow its food brands in a low-growth environment, CEO Paul Polman suggested today (20 January).

What the analysts say: Unilever's mixed 2014 20 Jan 2015

Katy Askew

Unilever today (20 January) reported sales that came in below expectations. The company's top line has been hit by macroeconomic factors, particularly in emerging markets, as well as ongoing category decline in margarine. However, a focus on productivity enabled the group to accelerate margin expansion during a period of higher input costs for raw materials such as dairy and chocolate. The City's response has been as mixed as Unilever's performance.

On the move: Marfrig stresses continuity as CEO Rial departs 16 Jan 2015

Katy Askew

Brazilian protein group Marfrig surprised the market yesterday (15 January) with the announcement CEO Sergio Rial will stand down. Rial was a chief architect behind Marfrig's "focus to win" strategy, which has left the group on the cusp of a return to earnings stability. With internal successor Martin Secco Arias to replace Rial, the company was keen to emphasise coherence as it calmed initial investor jitters. Katy Askew reports.

Focus: Why the jury is out for Danone's Oikos Triple Zero 14 Jan 2015

Dean Best

Danone has launched Oikos Triple Zero, a product it hopes will attract more protein-hungry male consumers to a slowing Greek yoghurt category. Will the French company succeed? Dean Best investigates.

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